Sunday, September 30, 2012

ALA president addresses publishers

From the New York headquarters of the American Association of Publishers, Digital Book World live-Tweeted a Sept. 27 address by American Library Association president Maureen Sullivan.

I curated the live coverage with Storify because, after all, if you’re going to say that tweets were flying, as an American Libraries writer did, why not show it happening?

Saturday, September 29, 2012

e-Publishers discriminate against library users

"fREADom. Celebrate the right to read. Banned Books Week Sept. 30-Oct. 6, 2012."
American Booksellers Foundation for Free Expression:
Slide image for Banned Books Week

In time for Banned Books Week, American Library Association president Maureen Sullivan spoke out on a systemic barrier: three of the world’s largest publishers — Simon & Schuster, Macmillan and Penguin — refuse to provide access to their e-books in U.S. libraries.

Sullivan released an open letter to America’s publishers on Sept. 28. In it, she stated that these publishers are denying e-book access to “112,000 libraries and roughly 169 million public library users.”

Those library users include readers in the County of Lake, who recently acquired access to the Overdrive e-book catalog through the Lake County Library.

If libraries’ digital bookshelves mirrored the New York Times fiction best-seller list, according to Sullivan, those libraries would be missing half of their collection any given week due to the three publishers’ policies:
“The popular ‘Bared to You’ and ‘The Glass Castle’ are not available in libraries because libraries cannot purchase them at any price. Today’s teens also will not find the digital copy of Judy Blume’s seminal ‘Forever,’ nor today’s blockbuster ‘Hunger Games’ series.”
In her letter, Sullivan spoke to a benefit that I have relied upon all my life:
“America’s libraries have always served as the ‘people’s university’ by providing access to reading materials and educational opportunity for the millions who want to read and learn but cannot afford to buy the books they need. Librarians have a particular concern for vulnerable populations that may not have any other access to books and electronic content, including individuals and families who are homebound or low-income. To deny these library users access to e-books that are available to others — and which libraries are eager to purchase on their behalf — is discriminatory.”
And while Sullivan referred exclusively to “librarians” in statements like this and others, the issue of bridging the digital divide is a matter of grave importance to me as a volunteer, user, advocate and student.

I urge Simon & Schuster, Macmillan and Penguin to follow the example set by hundreds of e-book publishers that, as Sullivan stated, “have embraced the opportunity to create new sales and reach readers through our nation’s libraries.”

Banned Books Week is being observed this year from Sept. 30 to Oct. 6. For information and resources, visit

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Measure A working for Mendocino County libraries

"Measure Yay." Yarnbombing tag at Ukiah library
‘Measure Yay.’ Yarnbombing tag at Ukiah library
In a Sept. 24 editorial, the Ukiah Daily Journal states that Measure A is working for Mendocino County libraries.
“The hours have been expanded again so that people have plenty of opportunity to use the library, there appears to be plenty of staff on hand, and they are moving forward with programs as promised, from a new children's librarian to e-books.
“The library is once again a vibrant and happy place where learning and growing is easy and where people can sit quietly, congregate with neighbors, or bring their children for fun and activity.
“County residents supported Measure A library funding proposition by a large majority. We are delighted to see the effects of that support for the community.”
I hope for a similarly successful outcome for the Ashland Library levy, on ballots this November in Ashland, Ore.

According to an explanatory statement for Measure 15-113, the levy authorizes the City of Ashland to levy up to 21 cents per $1,000 assessed value each year to provide enhanced library services.

Renewal of the levy would maintain library hours at 40 hours per week. Without the levy, library hours would be reduced to 24 hours.

Student loan debt has grown 275 percent

According to Face The Facts USA, student loan debt grew 275 percent during the last decade. This is why I “hack” library school in the community college system.

For 100 days, Face The Facts USA is partnering with Lake County Publishing to present voters with one new fact each day until the election. View past facts at

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

‘A tweet without an @mention is a missed opportunity’

Head shot: Alexis Grant
Alexis Grant
Ninety percent of your tweets should include an @mention according to Alexis Grant, guest-blogging on Steve Buttry’s The Buttry Diary.
“Whenever you include someone else’s @handle in your tweet, that tweet shows up in their @mentions feed. Which means they’ll read your tweet. Which means they might click on your @handle to find out more about you. Which means they might follow you back.”
Grant, an entrepreneurial writer and digital strategist, is managing editor of Brazen Life, a blog for ambitious young professionals.

Read Grant’s guest post for The Buttry Diary at

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Copy quality affects swift publication of news release

One of the best professional investments I ever made was a $1 or $2 purchase: an Associated Press (AP) Stylebook that I found at a Santa Rosa yard sale. The book served me well during a two-year tenure as vice president of public relations for my local Toastmasters club, Tenacious Talkers, No. 8731.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Q&A on using Overdrive

Lakeport Library will host a Q&A on using the library’s eBook program, 6 p.m. Oct. 3 at 1425 N. High St. As explained in a press release by Jan Cook, library technician Christopher Veach will explain how to navigate in Overdrive, check out books and request books.

Lake County Library’s eBook loan program went live on Sept. 6 and, according to Cook, patrons began using it immediately. Cook stated that patrons are invited to bring their e-reader devices to the library and talk with Veach about the eBook program.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

How not to write about libraries

Writing at, library technologist Jessamyn West offers suggestions about how journalists should not write about libraries.

The list is comprehensive and corrects misperceptions and stereotypes: “Your library joke is tired, even if it’s new to you;” “Quit it with the wardrobe policing,” “We’re not all women, not even close” and “[N]ot everyone who works in a library is a librarian” to name a few.

Being as I both work as a journalist and volunteer at a library, this list was doubly enjoyable. Of course, it also holds me doubly responsible to write about libraries accurately.

Arrr! Talk Like a Pirate Day be Sept. 19!

I tweeted in character on Sept. 19 to observe Talk Like a Pirate Day.

I used a designated hashtag, #talklikeapirateday, when making my posts to Twitter. Much of the fun was to engage with other users during #DFMChat (a weekly chat among journalists who work for Digital First Media) but to give my posts piratical flavor.

During lunch today I curated highlights of Talk Like a Pirate Day with Storify.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Grassroots library advocacy with ALA Editions webinar

ALA Editions has the link to an informative free webinar, Introducing Grassroots Library Advocacy, archived at its blog. The webinar was presented on Aug. 2 and I listened to it last night and today.

The presenters, Lauren Comito with Cornell University, Aliqae Geraci with Queens Library and Christian Zabriskie with Queens Library, present an overview of tools and tactics for effective library advocacy.

Initial note-taking consisted of live-Tweeting while listening to the event. I used the hashtag that was promoted during the original live broadcast.

I then curated a Storify of the Grassroots Library Advocacy webinar.

The presenters noted that each year brings a fresh round of cuts to libraries and already-stressed patrons and staff. Libraries are having to do more with less. According to Geraci, the library supporter “can’t afford not to be an activist.”

Zabriskie suggested articulating specific goals and communicating what would be the consequence if the goals are not met. An example I draw is from the pending election for the Ashland Library levy that is on the November ballot.

Measure 15-113 would renew a levy that was originaly approved in November 2008 and expires in summer 2013. According to an explanatory statement for Measure 15-113, the levy authorizes the City of Ashland to levy up to 21 cents per $1,000 assessed value each year to provide enhanced library services.

Renewal of the levy would maintain library hours at 40 hours per week. Without the levy, library hours would be reduced to only 24 hours per week. That seems like a clearly-defined consequence to me.

(The levy will also finance three additional full-time employees or the equivalent and enhanced outreach programs for teens, seniors and children.)

The presenters recommended using multiple platforms to deliver the message of advocacy: Facebook, Twitter, blog posts and live-streaming as well as off-line approaches: postcards, rallies and other events. Webinar topics included finding and keeping volunteers and communication with the media.

I did find the following areas for improvement in subsequent presentations. With each new segment, the new presenter was not identified, which made it difficult for me to attribute points to the presenter who made them.

Also, in my capacity as a web and print journalist and a two-term vice president of PR for a local Toastmasters club, I offer supplemental public relations advice for effectively communicating with the media.

Your media contact will vary whether you are writing a letter to the editor, submitting an announcement or requesting coverage of an event.

Bottom line: this is a valuable presentation for building library advocacy. Even without an election on the horizon as it is for the Ashland Library, libraries constantly need advocates to communicate their value to the community.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Changes to library cataloging standard

An email this week from ALA Editions alerted me to the pending implementation of a new cataloging standard, Resource Description and Access (RDA):
“The March 2013 full implementation by Library of Congress and other national libraries is coming up fast, and libraries are working intensively to familiarize staff, whether they’re going to be simply interacting with records created using RDA or doing original cataloging themselves.”
Beginning Cataloging (Libraries Unlimited, 2009), the textbook in my cataloging course, briefly addressed this subject. Authors Jean Weihs and Sheila S. Inter discussed the future of descriptive cataloging:
“[The Joint Steering Committee for Development of RDA] claims that RDA’s rules will be simpler, have fewer exceptions, and be written in such a way that catalogers can judge for themselves how to handle variations from the norm without causing problems in local catalogs or bibliographic databases extending beyond the local library.”
I am new to the subject, but feel it important to keep up with pending developments.

The email promoted a workshop in October that gives an overview of RDA. The workshop will look at key aspects that make RDA different from the current standard, Anglo-American Cataloging Rules.

The workshop presenter, Chris Oliver, wrote Introducing RDA (ALA Editions).

I found a copy of Introducing RDA in the Sonoma County Library catalog. Hopefully after I have read Oliver’s report, RDA may be clearer to me -- at least in the context of being a newcomer to the discipline of cataloging.

Nature’s Patchwork Quilt by Mary Miché

Book cover: Nature's Patchwork Quilt
Nature’s Patchwork Quilt: Understanding Habitats (Dawn Publications, 2012) by Mary Miché will accompany me this morning to the Middletown Library.

The book, which was sent to the newsroom of the Lake County Record-Bee, is being offered as an addition to the library’s non-fiction children’s books.

Miché and illustrator Consie Powell use the theme of patchwork quilts to explain nature habitats.

The book places emphasis upon interdependence of life.

David Mizejewski, a naturalist for the National Wildlife Federation, credits Miché’s book for “an excellent job introducing ideas such as adaptation and biodiversity in an easy-to-understand, age-appropriate way.”

Supplemental resources assist to identify the diverse animals, birds and plants depicted within these pages. Seeing them in vivid color may pique the imagination to know more.

Miché is a Lakeport resident. More information about Nature’s Patchwork Quilt is available from its publisher at

Cross-posted to the WordPress blog of the UUCLC Lending Library

Friday, September 14, 2012

Makerblog: Wrist warmers knit on flower loom

Wrist warmers knit on Knifty Knitter flower loom
Wrist warmers knit on Knifty Knitter flower loom
During an Internet search for wrist warmer patterns, I came across a Make: Craft blog entry about wrist warmers knit on a flower loom. I was intrigued that at least one other crafter had arrived at the idea of knitting wrist warmers on a flower loom.

Knifty Knitter Loom-AlongNatalie Zee Drieu posted a pattern by Vickie Howell in September 2009 and I arrived at the idea independently one year ago with the creation of fingerless mitts.

Attempting to knit on a loom with removable pegs was a less-than-satisfying experience. It took several applications of glue to anchor the pegs in place but I finally had a glove-sized knitting loom.

I more or less approach this project as described in the blog: work in-the-round until it is time to knit an opening for the thumb, then work back and forth for six rows.
12-peg Provo Craft "Flower Loom"
Knifty Knitter Loom-Along

To complete the glove, I then resume working in the round.

I differ in my approach toward the use of ribbing as a decorative accent. The gloves shown above have two rows of knitting centered down the back of each glove.

I work counterclockwise and, using the anchor peg as my frame of reference, the peg immediately to its left in the image at right would be peg one. Peg two is to its left and so on for a total of 12.

To make the right-handed glove, I purl on pegs one, two and three, knit on four and five and purl on the remaining pegs six through 12.

When making the left-handed glove, I purl on pegs one through seven, knit on pegs eight and nine and purl on pegs 10 through 12.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Good news regarding Lake County feral cats

Here is some good news concerning Lake County’s population of feral cats: Lake County Animal Care and Control will offer to Clearlake residents only, feral cat spay or neuter surgeries and vaccination at a cost of $25 per animal.

Vouchers will be required and are available from the Animal Coalition of Lake County, 10 a.m. to noon every Wednesday at 14106 Lakeshore Drive in Clearlake.

A message was sent by Diane Tullos on behalf of Kathy Langlais of the Animal Coalition of Lake County.

It adds, “This is a very critical step towards getting the feral cat overpopulation problem in Clearlake under control. The Animal Coalition of Lake County would like to thank Bill Davidson at Animal Care and Control in Lakeport for making this happen.”

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Advice about Asperger’s and work from Penelope Trunk

My husband sent me a link to a blog by Penelope Trunk, a professional woman with Asperger’s syndrome (and no, if you followed the link and read the title of the post, my husband was not suggesting to me that I am annoying at work).

Trunk is an entrepreneur who founded Brazen Careerist. And today, when I followed the link, I learned that she is also a woman with Asperger’s syndrome.

“Work, by definition,” Trunk says in her post, “is a social skills decathlon.”

And it’s true. I had a very hard time originally finding work when I was out of school.

My first real job out of school was with a Marin County company that published a newsletter for executive job hunters. It was a small office and I was unable to handle the politics that seemed to accompany the job. Roughly one year later, my employment was terminated. The reason was not clearly explained to me.

The person who  hired me for my job with the Record-Bee took a chance on me because I did not interview very well. But I did my job well and I earned positive reviews for skills that became evident after I was on the job. That was about 15 years ago, before I knew I had Asperger’s.

When I learned there was a name to describe my constellation of traits, I was very forthcoming about it. I wrote extensively and my columns were published in the Record-Bee.

I took as my example Molly Ivins’ crusade to raise awareness of breast cancer so, really, not writing about my Asperger’s was never a consideration for me.

Trunk’s post is worthwhile reading for its advice about doing better at work. It’s comforting to be validated in my preference to spend less time with people:

“We can be normal in small spurts,” Trunk says. “We can look charming and quirky in small doses but in large doses, it's overwhelming. So go out to dinner, but then go home. Go to the company picnic, but just talk with people for a little bit. Then leave.”

Trunk advises following the rules, which is good advice but what happens when two people behave in a way that, on the surface, seems to break a rule but one of them gets away with it?

When I observe situations like this, I can’t help but wonder if something else is going on. To have any chance at making sense of it, I have to play social anthropologist.

Raising Cubby: the ‘other side’ of autism parenting

Book cover: "Raising Cubby" by John Elder Robison
With its release date set for March 12, Raising Cubby by John Elder Robison (Crown, 2013) seems a natural for my list of recommended books about autism.

Here is an update by Robison on Facebook that was posted this morning:

“The horror of autism! The anguish! Too many books have demonized young people like my son and I, and sensationalized our difficulties, in the name of memoir writing.

“The fact is, there are fun times in every family. How could it be otherwise? If kids weren’t fun, parents would simply eat them when the cupboards got bare.”

Trust Robison to provide a much-needed alternative to “my child is autistic and life is horrible” sensationalism.

Accepting the latter view means accepting that my existence made my mother’s life and my family’s life horrible and that, I refuse to do.

Raising Cubby, according to Robison, is “a celebration of the ‘other side’ of autism parenting, with the added twist of autistic parents.”

Published Sept. 18, 2012 in the Lake County Record-Bee

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

‘Social Thinking at Work’ provides detailed explanation

Book cover: "Social Thinking at Work"

Social Thinking at Work: A Guidebook for Understanding and Navigating the Social Complexities of the Workplace by Michelle Garcia Winner and Pamela Crooke is a worthy addition to my list of books for people on the autism spectrum.

Social Thinking at Work provides a detailed explanation of a subject that people are expected to grasp intuitively.

Winner and Crooke describe this ability as a “social radar system.” Those of us without that innate ability can be seriously disadvantaged -- hence my emphasis on the value of this book.

I believe I would have been spared a lot of loneliness and frustration at my inability to connect had this book been available to me when I was a young adult.

The use of good social skills, according to the authors, is more than just “acting nice.” Rather, it involves “the ability to effectively adapt our social behavior around others according to the situation, what we know about the people in the situation, and what our own needs are.”

Detailed chapters explain social thinking, good communication skills, and other aspects of social thinking. The authors address various situations that a person can expect to encounter at work, including frank discussions of bullying and sexual harassment.

Of particular benefit is an examination of using social media, given the insight about a person it can give to a potential employer.

Readers are given an opportunity to apply what they learn through Social Behavior Mapping: describe the situation, the behaviors they produce and whether it was expected or unexpected according to the situation.

The reader can document how the behavior was interpreted, the feelings it caused in others and the consequences. Finally, they can document their reactions to how people then treated them.

Social Thinking at Work is co-published by Think Social Publishing, Inc. and the North River Press Publishing Corporation.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a review copy of this book from the publisher. The opinion expressed is my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Monday, September 10, 2012

Posting fire advisories

"Thank you Firefighters" sign at Lake County Fairgrounds
Circa Aug. 17: Thank you Firefighters sign.
From Lake County Fair Facebook page
 I am in the office, processing announcements that relate to area fires (the Scotts Fire eight miles east of Ukiah, the 16 Complex in the Rumsey Canyon area and the North Pass Fire northeast of Covelo). Watch for updates on Cynthia Parkhill’s professional page on Facebook and at the Facebook page of the Lake County Record-Bee.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

UUA selects The New Jim Crow as 2012-13 Common Read

Book cover: The New Jim Crow by Michelle Alexander
The Unitarian Universalist Association announced Friday that the 2012-2013 UUA Common Read is The New Jim Crow by Michelle Alexander (The New Press, 2012):
“In this remarkable book, civil rights advocate and litigator Michelle Alexander asserts that crime-fighting policies and systems in the U.S., such as the ‘war on drugs’ and the incarceration system disproportionately and intentionally affect Americans of color. She describes multifaceted, lifelong discrimination and disenfranchisement that affect people who are branded ‘felon.’”
The UUA Common Read invites participants to read and discuss the same book in a given period of time. Its previous selections, Acts of Faith by Eboo Patel and The Death of Josseline by Margaret Regan, are both available in our UUCLC Lending Library. As stated by the UUA:
“A Common Read can build community in our congregations and our movement by giving diverse people a shared experience, shared language, and a basis for deep, meaningful conversations. A discussion guide to The New Jim Crow will be available online in October, 2012, to help Unitarian Universalist (UU) groups reflect on the book and consider together what steps they are called to take, as people of faith, in response to Alexander's call for awareness and action.”
Study guides for the previous Common Read selections can be accessed from

Cross-posted from the UUCLC Lending Library’s WordPress blog

Great cataloging aid: OCLC Classify

OCLC Classify is a great cataloging aid; I searched for a book in its database this morning.

The site displays the classification numbers that are most frequently assigned to that book in both Dewey and Library of Congress classification systems.

My thanks to Lorcan Dempsey on Twitter for informing me about this resource.

Fall season plays on stage at OSF

This guest post is by Patricia Feldhaus, a theater reviewer based in Chico, Calif. I know Feldhaus through my tenure producing an arts and entertainment section for the Lake County Record-Bee.

Politics and a musical mélange are featured in the new fall season plays at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival in Ashland.

Friday, September 7, 2012

Libraries have their own PAC

Ashland Library in Ashland, Ore.
Library in Ashland, Ore. Image by Curtis Cronn
Licensed for use under Creative Commons with some rights reserved 
EveryLibrary, the first and only national political action committee (PAC) for libraries, launched this week. Its objective: ballot initiatives and measures for local libraries.

An announcement dated Sept. 4 stated that “The organization, found online at, will fundraise nationally to support local library ballot committees and PACs, and provide them with technical support and consultancy on how to run – and win – at the ballot box.”

This is timely news for the Ashland Library, which has a levy on the November ballot.

Measure 15-113 would renew a levy that was originaly approved in November 2008 and expires in summer 2013. According to an explanatory statement for Measure 15-113, the levy authorizes the City of Ashland to levy up to 21 cents per $1,000 assessed value each year to provide enhanced library services.

The levy would, at a minimum, provide 16 additional open hours per week for a total of 40 hours. The levy would finance three additional full-time employees or the equivalent and enhanced outreach programs for teens, seniors and children. Measure 15-113 would renew the levy through June 30, 2017.

According to John Chrastka, executive director of EveryLibrary, “EveryLibrary is built on the idea that any library ballot initiative anywhere matters to every library everywhere.”

“EveryLibrary will allow us to raise funds and support specific ballot measures that keep libraries open and thriving,” Chrastka said. “Elections are the ‘last mile’ of library advocacy and this new PAC is an amazing opportunity for our community to talk directly to voters.”

eBooks available through Lake County Library

Jonathan and I spent some time last evening exploring the catalog of eBooks available for download through the Lake County Library.

eBooks are available through a partnership between Lake, Mendocino and Sonoma County Libraries, which have contracted with Overdrive. According to Jan Cook with the Lake County Library, the service allows library card-holders to download e-books to their Kindles and other electronic readers at no charge.

“Patrons will find a selection of more than 1,000 titles in the Overdrive catalog.”

Cook explained in a press release that patrons with valid Lake County Library cards can sign up with Overdrive. “Books will remain on the e-reader device until the due date, at which time they will disappear. Patrons may have five books checked out simultaneously and may request a maximum of five titles.”

Cook added that patrons can learn more about the program and get assistance through Overdrive’s online tutorials and help desk. Overdrive displays a list of compatible devices at

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Vineyard Run for Literacy set for Oct. 14

Walking in Vineyard Run for Literacy in Finley, Calif.
Jonathan and I walk during a previous Vineyard Run for Literacy
 I'm looking forward to walking again this year in the Vineyard Run for Literacy, scheduled for 9 a.m. Oct. 14 at Steele Wines, located off Highway 29 at Thomas Drive in Finley.

On-site registration begins at 8 a.m. Registration can also be completed online at

Participants can choose from 5 and 10K runs or a 5K walk. The suggested donation is $20 per person or $30 per family. Participants can also ask others to sponsor them. Sponsor sheets and pre-registration forms are available at Westamerica Bank, Lake County Library branches and the Lake County Visitors Center.

Proceeds benefit the Lake County Literacy Coalition. For more information, call 707-263-7633 or email

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Invite self-advocates to explain what ‘they’ want

Nothing about us without us
Image credit: A Diary of a Mom
“Jess,” the author of A Diary of a Mom, recounts a conversation with Liz Feld, president of Autism Speaks, in her Aug. 21 blog.

Specifically, Jess shares her thoughts about a question that she felt uncomfortable answering:
“I was explaining why a particular term was problematic and I said that I’d heard self-advocates condemn its use. She asked what they would prefer that we use. She really wanted to know how to better frame it. In context, the question came out, ‘So what do they want?’
“It took me four days to answer the question. I finally wrote the following.
‘The other day, you asked me what they (self-advocates) want. I don’t know if you caught it – but I was somewhat stymied by the question. And it’s bothered me ever since. I wondered if I couldn’t answer it because perhaps I just didn’t have the handle on this that I thought I did.
‘But then I had a revelation.
‘I can’t answer the question because I’m not the one of whom it should be asked. They are.
‘What they want is representation. What they want is to be included in the decision-making process. What they want is for us to stop asking *each other* what they want.
‘What they want is to not be the “they” in this conversation but the US.
‘That’s the answer to your question.’”
Jess expresses gratitude that Feld has begun reaching out to self-advocates.

I appreciate Jess deferring this question to “us” and I second her hope that through these conversations, “the gap can be bridged, changes will be made and that when Autism Speaks it will be autistic voices that we hear.”

Monday, September 3, 2012

Fragments of an SCA history

One of the best arguments for back-dating my writings and migrating them onto my blog is the reasonable assurance that they will continue to exist for as long as I allow them to.

I went looking today for a history of my involvement in the Society for Creative Anachronism. I wrote it more than 15 years ago and submitted it to the website of the Shire of Ravenshore in Lake and Mendocino counties.

Heraldic device: the Shire of Glyn Dwfn
Shire of Glyn Dwfn
I wanted to to share my history with a potential community, the Shire of Glyn Dwfn in the Principality of the Summits in the Kingdom of An Tir.

But I discovered today that the site was taken down and with it my history that documents honors earned in the Principality of the Mists and Kingdom of the West.

The only fragment that remains is my service as Chronicler, because I incorporated that information into social media resumes on Facebook and LinkedIn:

I served as Chronicler for the Shire of Wolfscairn (Sonoma County, Calif.) from October, A.S. XXX (1995) to September, A.S. XXXIII (1998). And I served as Chronicler for the Principality of the Mists (San Francisco Bay Area) from September, A.S. XXXII (1997) to November, A.S. XXXIV (1999).

I guest-blogged the benefits of my involvement in the SCA for the Autism Women’s Network on May 6, 2011. Among those benefits was meeting professional deadlines as a newsletter publisher.

As I related in the guest blog, I think this experience served me well later in my professional capacity as a newspaper paginator/editor.

In 2010, Daniel J. Vance published an interview with me as an editor on the autism spectrum. In it, I credit the SCA as “the high note” of my life, a place where I met my husband and felt accepted for the first time in my life.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

From consumers to creators of media

People at TC Rover community media lab
Viking fans Brett Gardner and his mother, Tami Gardner, watch  a video on the
TC Rover TV with John Brewer and C.J. Sinner of
From Steve Buttry/The Buttry Diary

In the September/October edition of American Libraries, author Greg Landgraf highlights eight libraries and four museums awarded $100,000 grants to create digital learning labs and mentor teens to become creators and not merely consumers of media.

I see similar benefits in the open newsrooms and mobile newsrooms that are championed by Digital First Media. Two highlighted this week in Steve Buttry’s Buttry Diary are the Oakland Tribune’s community newsroom and the NewsVroom mobile community newsroom/classroom of Gametime PA,, Smart magazine, and the York Daily Record.

One month earlier,’s TC Rover made its debut in the Twin Cities area.

This is an exciting time to be in the fields of librarianship and journalism -- and hands-on engagement is a place where these occupations naturally intersect. Both have an interest in promoting engaged and responsible citizenship.

Libraries (and newsrooms) are being reconfigured for 21st-century learning; in the same issue of American Libraries, Linda W. Braun describes the information commons, learning labs and makerspaces that are emerging in newly-opened spaces.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Social Thinking at Work

Book cover: Social Thinking at Work

Toward the end of the week I began reading Social Thinking at Work by Michelle Garcia Winner and Pamela Crooke (Think Social Publishing, 2011).

I am three chapters in and am impressed with its explanations of the workplace’s hidden rules.

I think this book will be a worthy addition to the books I recommend for people on the autism spectrum. Stay tuned for my impressions as I advance further in the book.